650 Reynolds Alley
West Chester, PA 19383
701 Market Street, Concourse Level
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Direct Practice with Individuals and Families is an approach to social work grounded in human rights and social and economic justice. Graduates of the MSW Program at West Chester University are trained to work with individuals and families using strengths-based, research-informed, and community-oriented assessment, intervention and evaluation skills to enhance resiliency, support recovery, and mitigate the effects of trauma to build capacity.
1 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Leading Change 2.0: Advancing the Behavioral Health of the Nation, 2015-2018. HHS Publication No. (PEP) 14-LEADCHANGE2. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Health Services Administration, 2014.
2 SAMHSA's Partners for Recovery Initiative. (2013, March 1). Retrieved November 25, 2014, from http://www.samhsa.gov/sites/default/files/resiliency-annotated-bibliography.pdf
3 Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration. (n.d.). Retrieved November 25, 2014, from http://captus.samhsa.gov/prevention-practice/strategic-prevention-framework/build-capacity
The goals of the MSW Program at West Chester University are to:
The Graduate Social Work Department provides a quality, affordable and accessible Master of Social Work degree in preparation for a career in an evolving, complex, technological, and global society. It prepares graduates who can think critically, communicate effectively, embrace diversity, practice ethically, respond to the needs of vulnerable and oppressed populations, are committed to human rights and social and economic justice, and are competent to practice with individuals and families.
Students take three electives to round out their knowledge with courses that offer in-depth training in emerging practice areas. Electives are offered throughout the year in both semesters, during the summer, and in condensed week-long formats. Advanced electives are available for concentration-level students only. Several electives are available to non-degree students who may seek permission from the instructor under special circumstances.
The MSW Program typically offers these electives, pending sufficient enrollment:
Students in the Master of Social Work program at West Chester University can also earn graduate certificates from several graduate departments within the university. Many graduate certificates at West Chester University require 18 credit hours. Most MSW students can use nine of these credits as their three elective courses required to complete an MSW degree. This means it's possible for MSW students to earn a graduate certificate along with their MSW with only three additional classes.
Graduate certificates help students and professionals looking for specialization in a field without the time and cost of obtaining another degree. This specialization is helpful for professional growth and is attractive to employers looking for individuals with additional skills.
MSW students at West Chester University have the opportunity to obtain these certificates:
The WCU Academic Integrity Policy states that, "under some circumstances, if a student is found to have violated their professional code, that violation may be considered a breach of the Academic Integrity Policy." The MSW Program at WCU expects all MSW students to consistently and routinely demonstrate professional behavior in accordance with the NASW Code of Ethics and the expectations listed below.
In accord with the Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards of the Council on Social Work Education, the MSW Program at West Chester University measures and reports student learning outcomes. Students are assessed on their mastery of 10 core competencies (EP 2.1.1 through 2.1.10), representing dimensions of social work practice that all social workers are expected to master during their professional training. A measurement benchmark is set by the social work programs for each competency. An assessment score at or above that benchmark is considered by the program to represent mastery of that particular competency. The MSW Program benchmark for the attainment of competency in each of the CSWE Core Competencies is for 85 percent of students to have scored at least 83 (equivalent to grade of B) on each measurement of each Competency and associated Advanced Practice Behaviors.